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George C. Marshall Memorandum for War Plans
Division: (Attention Colonel Ridgway)
June 21, 1941 [Washington, D.C.]
In an interview with the President day before yesterday, in his bed-room, Colonel Stimson and I presented Joint Board paper regarding the establishment of some of our troops in the Natal region in Brazil. We also gave him, and he glanced through my memorandum to Mr. Welles on the same subject.
We talked over the vital importance of the matter and the necessity for speedy action. We focused on the proposition that we thought he should force the State Department to find a solution within the next two weeks. It was up to them to find a solution, but we must get action immediately.
He discussed several possibilities, but thought the most likely method, and the one he would take up with Mr. Welles, would be to get Vargas1 to give us a limited lease—only for the period of the emergency—to establish a small air base in the Natal-Recife region. He thought that that probably would be the best, or at least the only practicable basis on which Vargas could put the thing over. He wanted the offer to come from Brazil. Behind it would be the necessity that we would back that Government. This last was not an emphatic part of the proposal, but it was involved in the conversation.2
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed memorandum.
1. President Get